IBM 5170  -  Low-Level Format for Supplied Controller

WARNING:   Low-level formatting a hard drive will destroy any existing data on that drive.


The following is applicable to the two types of controllers supplied in the IBM 5170. Controller #1  Controller #2


Low-level formatting is not going to work if your drive and IBM controller are not correctly cabled and configured.  Incorrect drive termination can also have an affect.  If you are in any doubt about that, then before proceeding to perform a low-level format, refer to the following two links.
Controller jumpers
Cabling and termination

Low-Level Formatting

The following are two techniques.  Both assume that the hard drive type number in SETUP has already been correctly set.

1. Advanced Diagnostics Disk
2. SpeedStor

Follow Up Actions

After the low-level format, to get the hard drive booting to DOS, you will need to perform the standard FDISK/FORMAT operations.

NOTE: If you are using an early version of DOS (e.g. 3.3), and you see "Disk Boot failure" after using FDISK/FORMAT, then try a later version of DOS (e.g. 6.22).
Early versions of DOS don't cope with certain areas of the hard drive being unusable.